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Myth: State secrets and the Obama Administration

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The Cat-Tribe
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Myth: State secrets and the Obama Administration

Postby The Cat-Tribe » Mon Aug 10, 2009 3:50 pm

Contrary to popular belief, the Obama Administration has not expanded, abused, defended, or continued the Bush Adminstration's use of the "state secrets privilege."

What is the state secrets privilege?

“The state secrets privilege is a common law evidentiary privilege that permits the government to bar the disclosure of information if ‘there is a reasonable danger’ that disclosure will ‘expose military matters which, in the interests of national security, should not be divulged.’” Al-Haramain Islamic Found. v. Bush, 507 F.3d 1190, 1196 (9th Cir. 2007) (quoting United States v. Reynolds, 345 U.S. 1, 10 (1953)). The ability of the executive to protect state secrets from disclosure in litigation has been recognized from the earliest days of the Republic. See Totten v. United States, 92 U.S. 105 (1875); United States v. Barr, 25 F. Case 30 (C.C.D. Va. 1807); [additional citations ommitted].

Also, without my agreeing with Wikipedia's take on it, here is Wikipedia's further explanation.

Why am I posting this thread?

To counter a misunderstanding and/or lies. In several Obama threads (especially recently), I've seen the argument that President Obama has done something wrong involving the state secrets privilege. The argument tends to be that the President is continuing to expand the privilege, defending the Bush Adminstration's abuse of the privilege, breaking a campaign promise about the privilege, etc. See, e.g., post, post. These accusations aren't true. The state secrets privilege long predates the Bush Administration. The Bush Administration abused the privilege by citing in a ridiculous number of cases -- including at least one where a federal court has held the government committed fraud in asserting the privilege. President Obama criticized the abuse of the privilege by the Bush Administration and has pledged to rein it the use of privilege.

Some media and bloggers have overreacted to a couple of cases in which the Obama Administration has defended the existence of the privilege or even mentioned it in passing as a "setting off alarm bells." Bullshit.

That's my rant. Any thoughts?
I quit (again).
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The Cat-Tribe wrote:With that, I am done with these shenanigans. Do as thou wilt.

Can't miss you until you're gone, Ambassador. Seriously, your delegation is like one of those stores that has a "Going Out Of Business" sale for twenty years. Stay or go, already.*snip*
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Maurepas
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Re: Myth: State secrets and the Obama Administration

Postby Maurepas » Mon Aug 10, 2009 4:08 pm

That Legalese should really be a recognized language, :p

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Brewdomia
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Re: Myth: State secrets and the Obama Administration

Postby Brewdomia » Mon Aug 10, 2009 4:09 pm

prepare for the flamefest


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Yenke-Bin
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Re: Myth: State secrets and the Obama Administration

Postby Yenke-Bin » Mon Aug 10, 2009 4:13 pm

OMG. You flaming liberal! How dare you speak the truth about Obama!111


Kidding aside. Please continue to make threads. I really enjoy what you write. Have you thought about writing for a journal or paper?
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Marcuslandia
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Re: Myth: State secrets and the Obama Administration

Postby Marcuslandia » Mon Aug 10, 2009 4:21 pm

Despite the fact that I voted for Obama, I must say that there are a number of things that have not been done in regards to what I perceived as campaign promises. One was that he had stated he would take off the lid of secrecy on many wrongs committed at Gitmo and abroad; he has apparently changed his mind. Another was his repeated statement that (paraphrased), "If there is a finding that former Administration officials were guilty of crimes, they WILL be prosecuted." However, it seems obvious that if one refuses to even look, there can be no finding of wrongdoing.

Are those abuses of or extensions of the state secrets privilege? It seems that my opinion on the subject (and the opinions of millions of other Americans I'm guessing) doesn't matter. The only opinion that seems to matter is Obama's. Which we are NOT privy to, because he doesn't seem inclined to explain the details of why he's backed off on fulfilling those promises.
Last edited by Marcuslandia on Mon Aug 10, 2009 4:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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The Cat-Tribe
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Re: Myth: State secrets and the Obama Administration

Postby The Cat-Tribe » Mon Aug 10, 2009 4:24 pm

Marcuslandia wrote:Despite the fact that I voted for Obama, I must say that there are a number of things that have not been done in regards to what I perceived as campaign promises. One was that he had stated he would take off the lid of secrecy on many wrongs committed at Gitmo and abroad; he has apparently changed his mind. Another was his repeated statement that (paraphrased), "If there is a finding that former Administration officials were guilty of crimes, they WILL be prosecuted." However, it seems obvious that if one refuses to even look, there can be no finding of wrongdoing.

Are those abuses of or extensions of the state secrets privilege? It seems that my opinion on the subject (and the opinions of millions of other Americans I'm guessing) doesn't matter. The only opinion that seems to matter is Obama's. Which we are NOT privy to, because he doesn't seem inclined to explain the details of why he's backed off on fulfilling those promises.


The things you complain about re campaing promises have nothing whatsoever to do with the state secrets privilege.

Accordingly, I won't argue about whether those complaints have merit.
I quit (again).
The Altani Confederacy wrote:
The Cat-Tribe wrote:With that, I am done with these shenanigans. Do as thou wilt.

Can't miss you until you're gone, Ambassador. Seriously, your delegation is like one of those stores that has a "Going Out Of Business" sale for twenty years. Stay or go, already.*snip*
"Don't give me no shit because . . . I've been Tired . . ." ~ Pixies
With that, "he put his boots on, he took a face from the Ancient Gallery, and he walked on down the Hall . . ."

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Der Teutoniker
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Re: Myth: State secrets and the Obama Administration

Postby Der Teutoniker » Mon Aug 10, 2009 4:34 pm

Katganistan wrote:There'd better not be a flamefest.


Bring it on Kat! ;)

(Totally just kidding, right?)
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Marcuslandia
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Re: Myth: State secrets and the Obama Administration

Postby Marcuslandia » Mon Aug 10, 2009 4:37 pm

The Cat-Tribe wrote:The things you complain about re campaing promises have nothing whatsoever to do with the state secrets privilege.

Accordingly, I won't argue about whether those complaints have merit.

I seem to recall that when Obama announced that he would NOT release all of the Abu Ghraib (spelling?) photo evidence, he cited Security concerns -- which I now associated with state secrets. Quite possibly he did NOT directly cite SSP as the foundation to not follow through, but it does seem to be in the same general subject matter.
Last edited by Marcuslandia on Mon Aug 10, 2009 4:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"If you don't know what is worth dying for, your life isn't worth living."

"Choose wisely."

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The Cat-Tribe
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Re: Myth: State secrets and the Obama Administration

Postby The Cat-Tribe » Mon Aug 10, 2009 4:40 pm

Marcuslandia wrote:
The Cat-Tribe wrote:The things you complain about re campaing promises have nothing whatsoever to do with the state secrets privilege.

Accordingly, I won't argue about whether those complaints have merit.

I seem to recall that when Obama announced that he would NOT release all of the Abu Ghraib (spelling?) photo evidence, he cited Security concerns -- which I now associated with state secrets. Quite possibly he did NOT directly cite SSP as the foundation to follow through, but it does seem to be in the same general subject matter.


The state secrets privilege is a specific rule relating to whether certain things can be disclosed in a court of law.

The general nature of concerns for national security and/or government secrecy is tangentially related to the states secret privilege, but they are not the same thing.

I'm not accusing you of a hijack. I'm not saying that whether Obama should release items like those photos isn't a legitimate topic. I'm just saying that it has nothing to do with the MYTH I am trying to dispel.
I quit (again).
The Altani Confederacy wrote:
The Cat-Tribe wrote:With that, I am done with these shenanigans. Do as thou wilt.

Can't miss you until you're gone, Ambassador. Seriously, your delegation is like one of those stores that has a "Going Out Of Business" sale for twenty years. Stay or go, already.*snip*
"Don't give me no shit because . . . I've been Tired . . ." ~ Pixies
With that, "he put his boots on, he took a face from the Ancient Gallery, and he walked on down the Hall . . ."

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Ostronopolis
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Re: Myth: State secrets and the Obama Administration

Postby Ostronopolis » Mon Aug 10, 2009 4:45 pm

Well, considering the State's Secrets had to do with national security (what it's stated intentions were) I'm concerned he's NOT implementing it.
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The Cat-Tribe
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Re: Myth: State secrets and the Obama Administration

Postby The Cat-Tribe » Mon Aug 10, 2009 4:46 pm

Ostronopolis wrote:Well, considering the State's Secrets had to do with national security (what it's stated intentions were) I'm concerned he's NOT implementing it.


:palm:
I quit (again).
The Altani Confederacy wrote:
The Cat-Tribe wrote:With that, I am done with these shenanigans. Do as thou wilt.

Can't miss you until you're gone, Ambassador. Seriously, your delegation is like one of those stores that has a "Going Out Of Business" sale for twenty years. Stay or go, already.*snip*
"Don't give me no shit because . . . I've been Tired . . ." ~ Pixies
With that, "he put his boots on, he took a face from the Ancient Gallery, and he walked on down the Hall . . ."

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Ostronopolis
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Founded: Dec 29, 2008
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Re: Myth: State secrets and the Obama Administration

Postby Ostronopolis » Mon Aug 10, 2009 4:47 pm

The Cat-Tribe wrote:
Ostronopolis wrote:Well, considering the State's Secrets had to do with national security (what it's stated intentions were) I'm concerned he's NOT implementing it.


:palm:


:eyebrow:
Most Noble Republican Union of Ostronopolis
“Mortici Touaente Antimia”
Ostronopolian Trading Company || Congburgers || Communique Guide || Factbook ||
Member of: || The Conglomerate || Sovereign Network
Observer of: || COMINTERN || IFA ||

Quotes:
<Amit:> Ostro
<Amit> Through your sheer force of character
<Amit> You could get a nation to work for you

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JuNii
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Re: Myth: State secrets and the Obama Administration

Postby JuNii » Mon Aug 10, 2009 4:50 pm

The Cat-Tribe wrote:The state secrets privilege is a specific rule relating to whether certain things can be disclosed in a court of law.

The general nature of concerns for national security and/or government secrecy is tangentially related to the states secret privilege, but they are not the same thing.

I'm not accusing you of a hijack. I'm not saying that whether Obama should release items like those photos isn't a legitimate topic. I'm just saying that it has nothing to do with the MYTH I am trying to dispel.

and it's important to have this distinction.

after all, how many of the Gitmo Detainee trials have started?

actually, this is a serious question. I'm not keeping up with Gitmo and the Detainees... so if none of their trials started, then duh, of course he didn't use the SSP... :p
on the other hand... I have another set of fingers.

Unscramble these words...1) PNEIS. 2)HTIELR 3) NGGERI 4) BUTTSXE
1) SPINE. 2) LITHER 3)GINGER 4)SUBTEXT


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